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In Defense Of: “Alien Vs. Predator” (2004)

Paul W.S. Anderson's critically maligned Alien Vs. Predator is by no means the best Alien or Predator film out there - but here's why it's worth a watch.

Paul W.S. Anderson’s Alien Vs. Predator got a bad rap when it first released back in 2004, and rightfully so. In comparison to what had come before it – namely the 1-2 combo punch of genre defining flicks Alien and Aliens, along with the terrific spine-ripping hunt-em-up Predator – it failed to truly stand tall when placed side-by-side with its preceding cinematic brethren.

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A PG-13 take on 20th Century Fox’s sci-fi horror blueprint, Anderson’s feature was undoubtedly an attempt to broaden the mass market appeal of two of the most iconic intergalactic monsters of cinema, and despite raking in a healthy $172.5 million dollars at the global box office (from a $60 million dollar budget, no less), it was pretty much mauled by critics and loathed by the majority of hardcore fans upon release.

Now, almost fourteen years later, I’m here to set the record straight and rally together both xenomorph and yautja fans alike, and let you in on a little secret: Alien Vs. Predator really wasn’t that bad. Now say that again, but this time with meaning.

I’m here to outline a few reasons why I think Anderson’s unloved sci-fi crossover was actually a pretty fun movie, if you can stomach many of its obvious shortcomings. So, get to the choppa and strap yourselves in — I have a feeling this is gonna be a bumpy ride…